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Apple rules, dethrones Coca-Cola as world’s top brand

Apple has unseated Coca-Cola as the world’s No. 1 brand, as the company founded by Steve Jobs is viewed as a leader in design, performance and focuses on customers, according to a study of the Top 100 brands by Interbrand Corp.

Interbrand’s latest list reflects the growing clout the technology industry has in influencing consumer tastes and driving demand.

Apple, a powerhouse in computing with its iPhones, iPads and Macs, now leads Interbrand’s top 100 Best Global Brands list for 2013. The Cupertino-based company is followed by No. 2 Google, the dominate search engine and social media company, and the force behind the Android operating system, which powers Samsung and other devices.

In fact, tech companies dominate the top 10 brands overall. Rounding out the group from starting with No. 3 are IBM, Microsoft, GE, McDonald’s, Samsung, Intel and Toyota.

Apple’s rise knocked Atlanta-based Coca-Cola off the perch it held for the last 13 years as the most valuable brand in the world, according to a global brand consultancy.

When Apple appeared on the list for the first time in 2000, it ranked #36 and had a brand value of $6.6 billion. Today, the brand that Steve Jobs made a household name before his death in 2011 is valued at $98.3 billion. The company released a new operating system and two new smartphones in recent weeks and is expected to update its popular tablet in the months ahead.

Interbrand said Apple is able to anticipate what consumers want next and break new ground when it comes to design and performance, creating “a seamless omnichannel experience for customers.”

“Every so often, a company changes our lives—not just with its products, but with its ethos,” said Jez Frampton, Interbrand’s global chief executive officer. “This is why, following Coca-Cola’s 13-year run at the top of Best Global Brands, Apple now ranks #1.”

Interbrand arrives at a brand value by considering its financial performance, the role a brand plays in influencing consumer choice and its strength in commanding a premium price, or in securing a company’s profit.

Between last year and this year, Apple’s brand value has risen 28 percent. Google’s value during the period, $93.2 billion, is up 34 percent. Coca-Cola’s brand value $79.2 billion, is up 2 percent.

The total value of the 100 brands is $1.5 trillion, an 8.4 percent increase in value over last year’s list, according to Interbrand.

Yahoo and BlackBerry fell off this year’s ranking. Nokia dropped to 57th place from 19th with the largest decline in brand value in the history of the 14-year study.

New names on the list include Discovery, Duracell and Chevrolet. The fastest-rising brands were Apple, Facebook, Prada, Google and Amazon.